View Full Version : Access panel removal on 2008 197
I have an 08 Prostar 197 and have been trying to figure out how to get the access panel off, the one that covers the dripless packing unit, the bilge blower, and the adjustment nuts to make the steering wheel perfectly straight when driving.
I for the likes of me cannot figure out how to get it out.
Underneath are two aluminum cross members that have some fancy welding done that appear to go into know where. There are NO screws anywhere along the defined edges of the panel. The motor box is screwed to the panel with 6 screws but they don't go into the stringers etc.
It can't be that hard to get out, right? Blowers fail, dripless packing units fail...certainly there has to be some trick to this.
03-08-2009, 12:11 AM
That panel is attached via hinges to the motor box. The panel itself is a friction fit with no screws or bolts holding it down on either side or end.
Open the motorbox and detach the gas struts. Now open the motor box all the way. You can now leverage the motor box upwards and towards the stern. This will pull that floor panel out of it's friction fit between the left and right floorboards. Flop the motor box onto the sundeck. The panel you have been talking about will now be hanging off the motor box.
Having 2 people is really helpful, although I've been able to do it myself. I've found removal to be an easy one person job. Putting it back together by myself has gotten interesting on a couple occasions. I'll try to dig up photos.
03-08-2009, 12:26 AM
Sorry, just looked through all my photos. Not one with the motor box / panel assembly out of boat. From what I wrote above you can now figure it out. No screws.
When putting it back in, you have to make sure you get that panel as far towards the stern as possibly. Leverage it back. Otherwise, the motor box will rub the bottom of pylon when closing, and the latch in the box may not line up correctly with the pin on the floor.
No screws heh? That is kind of scarey. I will agree it isn't going anywhere. The carpet appears to go around the corners of that panel so can I assume the carpet is the friction point or is it fiberglass to fiberglass on the edges?
If I lift up the box (LY6 box is heavy!) and pry carefully up on one corner to give it a try, do you think it will pop up but allow me to push it back in place?
I can go over this with the dealer when he gets back next week. This will be the first tournament boat (we have had 2 over the last 20 years) that didn't either pop up with hinges (Malibu Response) or have screws (Supra Comp TS6m).
I assume you have a 197 or 190? I'm still worried about the floor being a shade spongy in one spot (behind the drivers seat). I can't find the links to the pictures of how they construct these things (deleted I guess back in 2005) short of reading the old posts in that they drill 3 inch holes from front to back to inject flotation foam in. This boat has 3 hours on it and it was made January 2008.
I probably need to post another message under "spongy floors"
03-08-2009, 01:27 PM
I've owned two 197's. 2006 and 2007 model years. I've worked on a 2008 197 at our club as well. I've had the floor/box out of all 3 boats in the last 2 years. I went through the same exact process as you with my 2006. Stood there scratching my head for a bit. Called my dealer and he told me exactly as I just told you. My previous boats were Brendellas and Nautiques. This was a little new for me too.
It is a tight fit. The carpet edges on the left and right floor boards make contact with the carpet edges on the center floor panel. Two carpeted surfaces pushed together in a tight confine generate a lot of friction.
If you pry up a little and stop - as you just described, you can then shut the motor box. go to the floor panel - and step on it. It will go back down with a carpet sliding sound and then a little thump.
That center floorboard panel is aluminum, as you have observed.
Your spongy floor is something I've encountered in a friend's 2007 197 TT boat. His was located on the port side, at the back of motor box - half way between side of boat and motor box. It was a little spot that would pop up and down when stepped on. His dealer took care of that under warranty. I do not recall the fix, but it had to be fixed.
I have a photo from the factory of an 'empty' 2009 before carpet. I'll try to post that in a bit.
If you would feel more comfy waiting for your dealer to get back, thats understandable. But, you will waste about a week.
With the LY6 box I would advise having a helper the first couple times. Until you work out a system to safely get it out and back in, without breaking your back or hitting the top gelcoat with the exposed aluminum ribs of the hanging center floor panel.
03-08-2009, 02:01 PM
Just looked through all my factory pics. Thought I had one of a naked 197 floor, but it already had the carpet in. The other is of my 197 with the panel removed. You can see the edges of the left/right panels. Panel just sits in this groove.
On our previous boat I took pictures of everything that I did...and it helped others of that particular brand immensely...
I have the camera ready to go on this one...Sometimes I think it would be nice to have a picture gallery so people can go and take a "visual" of how things come apart or go together. It's a learning process...to bad the industry isn't standardized...however that would eliminate the challenge!!
Yes, the floor bothers me. It's not like it fell through or anything but I like a solid feel under my feet. I cringe at the thought of taking the carpet up and having someone do something to the boat that should have been checked at the factory. Being brand new makes it even worse.